Our Music Our Selves

Yaum-ul-Khamees (“Thor’s Day”), 15 Dhul-Hijjah 1435 (October 9, 2014) — Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 (“From the New World”)

Posted in Programming by Lester Knibbs on the October 2nd, 2014

In the Spirit of the Gracious and Compassionate
Creator of the Heavens and the Earth

As-Salaam alaikum! Peace!

Our Music Our Selves is an exploration of the symphonic structure and message of the Qur’an and an exploration of the symphonic structure and message of our serious music, and of the role of both in shaping our human history and identity.

We ask and attempt to answer the questions, Who are we? What are we? and What will we become? Our mission is a mission of healing, a sacred jihaad, to overcome the damaging effects of over two thousand years of religious lies which enslave the vast majority of human beings, and to overcome, as well, the damaging effects of the Middle Passage, the centuries of terroristic exploitation and oppression, and the generations of self-perpetuating self-destruction which continue to afflict the African American people. This program is not entertainment; it is struggle, healing, and change.

Our scheduled broadcast time is every Thursday morning from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time on http://www.blogtalkradio.com/americanmuslim360. Our call-in number is 646-716-4478. You can call in to listen or, by dialing “1″, join our conversation. Call us! We love to hear from you.

THIS YAUM-UL-KHAMEES (“THOR’S DAY), 15th of Dhul-Hijjah 1435 (October 9, 2014):

Our theme for the year 1435 A.H. has been The Chaconne. See complete programming for the year. We will not be having a two-week review of The Chaconne.

This week, we resume our series of 19th century symphonic works with the Symphony No. 9 in E minor (“From the New World”), composed in 1893 by the Czech composer Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904). This was his last symphony, and his most popular.

Dvořák composed this symphony while living in the United States. He had accepted the offer to be the director of the new conservatory of music established in New York City, but only on condition that African American and Native American students attend the institution tuition-free. He was so fond of the African American folk spirituals that he had one of his students — Harry T. Burleigh — sing them day after day for many hours. (Burleigh became one of the leading African American composers of symphonic music.) Several of the themes in this symphony are based on African American spirituals, and the third movement — the scherzo — is influenced by Native American music.

This symphony makes extensive use of cyclical form — bringing back themes from earlier movements in the later movements. It’s cumulative in this particular symphony. Each movement recalls at least one or two themes from every previous movement. This leads to powerful climaxes in the finale.


Next week and the week after that — the last two weeks of the year 1435 A.H. —  we plan to share with you the fifth symphony and the second symphony by the Austrian composer Gustav Mahler. We will not have the planned two-week review of the Chaconne.

  • 15 Dhul-Ḥijjah 1435 (October 9, 2014):
    Dvořak, Symphony #9 in E minor (1893)
  • 22 Dhul-Ḥijjah 1435 (October 16, 2014):
    Gustav Mahler, Symphony #5 in D major (1902)
  • 29 Dhul-Ḥijjah 1435 (October 23, 2014):
    Gustav Mahler, Symphony #2 in C minor (1894)


As usual, I continue to call on my Muslim Brothers and Sisters — especially my Brothers (because Allah has given men the responsibility of leadership) — if you have not been reading the Qur’an (which is in Arabic and only in Arabic, which is what Allah says, so do not be one of the mukadhdhibeen and call Allah a liar), I am calling on you to admit that you have never ever read the Qur’an.

Just ‘fess up and say:

“I have never ever read the Qur’an.”

That’s all. Do that, and you will be helping yourself and many, many other Muslims. In fact, you will be helping every person in the world — even if just a little.


Please join Brother Solomon for this very special sharing and conversation.

The American Muslim 360 website (which may be currently non-functional):

The American Muslim 360 Purple Politics website:
(or find the link at http://americanmuslim360.com/)

Purple Politics seeks to bring fair balanced reporting on the issues that matter in the lives of everyday people because we care about the state of our world. Peace is our vision, mission and hope for all of humanity! Your comments matter to us. Peace 2U!

Dear Listeners, my good Brothers and Sisters, please check out my other blogs from time to time. They are:

Doctor Hakeem: African-American Commentaries


Word-to-Word: A Comparative Study of the Bible and the Qur’an


Take it easy.

Brother Lester

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